Wittyfeed caught up with the team of 'Bahubali' during a press conference meet in Delhi on the occasion of the launch of 'The Rise of Sivagami': Book 1 of 'Baahubali - Before the Beginning.' The high profile event was attended by author Anand Neelakantan, director S. S. Rajamouli, actors Rana Daggubati and Ramya Krishnan, producer Shobu Yarlagadda, and Alok Tandon, CEO of INOX, among other distinguished dignitaries from various walks of life. Amidst the great anticipation surrounding the upcoming release of Bahubali 2, the event started off with a panel discussion followed by a round of Q & A with the media.
While talking to the moderator about his iconic role of the mighty Bhallala Deva in the Bahubali film series, Rana Daggubati was full of praise for S. S. Rajamouli. "It is one of the finest characters ever written in cinema. It is not because I am in it but because of the character itself. I am sure anybody who played it would have played it as finely, if not better, with a filmmaker like him sitting as the captain of the ship."
Daggubati also talked about how Bahubali has been instrumental to his journey as an actor. "In 7 years of my film career, I have somewhere been part of Bahubali for five years. So most of what I know is from this film. Most of what I have learned is from this film. I am hoping that I would get to play more such characters, but that's wishful thinking. I hope I take these learnings and keep doing better and better cinema," he further added.
While answering a question from Wittyfeed about his early influences as a writer, Anand Neelakantan talked about the indelible impressions that mythological books have had on him. "My influences, like all Indians, have always been Ramayana and Mahabharata as well as other folk tales. In my village in Cochin we have so many temples, and in all these places there are always these Kathakali performances, classical arts, and folk arts… I have grown up with these influences. Now, only 10 percent of the Indian stories are in the written form. Most of them are in the oral form, and I have been fortunate enough to have grown up in such an environment."
He also talked about the abundance of stories in the folklore. "There are countless stories in Indian cinema to tell. This is just the beginning. Bahubali is just the beginning. In the near future you will see many more stories inspired by Bahubali with typical Indian flavor and believe me, we are going to take over the world," explained Neelakantan.
While replying to an answer from Wittyfeed about the book, S. S. Rajamouli also unleashed his grand vision about Brand Bahubali. "It is a world of Bahubali. It is not just cinema inspiring literature. We have the books. We have the television series, and then we also have the animation series. We have a virtual reality film coming up. We also have games coming up. Everything is inside the world of Bahubali, and one will complement the other." He also emphasized the importance of giving one's best to one's creative designs. "You have to love your art-form, give your hundred percent because once the film goes out, there is no taking back. So, before its release give it your last reserves of energy… your physical and mental energy and put it into your product," asserted Rajamouli.
Rajamaouli also talked about what according to him would make the first Bahubali book stand out. "The great thing about this book is the characters and the incidents described, which just like the movie, have a high recollection value. I am sure that the book offers the recollection value a little bit more than the film itself. The incidents are so powerful and moving that it is impossible to ignore them.
The release of Bahubali 2 is not very far away now. We will know for sure as to what prompted Kattappa to kill Bahubali.